The Sunshine State is full of beaches, beautiful weather and things to do, however it also has some iconic foods that are a must-try when visiting. Some of these foods include stone crab, grouper, conch and fried alligator and when properly prepared they can not only create a unique dining experience, but are also insanely delicious.

We found some of the top restaurants in Florida to enjoy these local delicacies. All of them have exceptional local seafood on the menu, with a speciality dish that stood out.

Whether you are a local or just visiting – these spots should not be missed!

Originally Published: January 20, 2022 

Stone Crab (Top Picks)

The Stoned Crab (Key West)

The Stoned Crab is an unforgettable experience of local seafood, great views and delicious cocktails.  As listed in the title of the restaurant, their stone crab is a standout on the menu!  It is always caught fresh, so you can guarantee you are eating something literally caught that day!  

Billy’s Stone Crab (Tierra Verde)

Billy’s is a staple in Tampa Bay.  They have been serving up fresh local seafood for over 50 years.  This restaurant comes with a great meal and history.  The water views are amazing and they catch their own stone crabs, so the freshness is next level! 

Grimm’s Stone Crab (Everglades)

Grimm’s is a place not to be missed when visiting the Everglades.  They boast their own fleet of stone crab boats to ensure you are getting the freshest local caught seafood possible.  They pride themselves on maintaining the welfare of the crabs when extracting the claws. 

Keys Fisheries (Middle Keys)

This restaurant in the Florida Keys is known for its unbeatable views and yummy seafood. They offer a market, restaurant, marina and online store to have delicious seafood shipped fresh to your door.  Keys is well known for all of their seafood, but their conch and stone crab are exceptional and locally fresh.

Fried Gator (Top Picks)

The Blue Gator (Dunnellon)

The atmosphere is welcoming and the service is amazing. Blue Gator is perfectly situated on the beautiful Withlacoochie and Rainbow rivers. The gator bites are what they are known for and they are incredible. Definitely worth the trip!

Shuck-N-Dive Cajun Cafe (Fort Lauderdale)

They are known for their gator, offering it different ways on the menu, including blackened.  All the seafood is fresh and cooked up cajun style. The oysters and crawfish are certified from Louisiana and are out of this world!  

Conch (Top Picks)

Conch Republic (Key West)

Conch Republic has a ton of history.  The location started as a place for local shrimpers and is now an amazing restaurant with some of the freshest seafood around.  You can’t get more local than caught right outside their door.  They have great views and lots of seating, so you can soak in the sunset over the water, while enjoying a delicious meal.  They also have live music at night to add to the ambiance. 

D.J.’s Clam Shack is a mix of Florida and New England all in

D.J.’s Clam Shack (Key West)

This is one amazing place.  They only use the best ingredients, some local and others brought in. Their lobster roll, clam chowder and conch fritters are out of this world! They also have a large outdoor dining area to enjoy your food in that beautiful Florida weather.  

B.O.’s Fish Wagon (Key West)

This is a seafood shack that has some of the best conch you will find in Florida!  All their seafood is amazing you really can’t go wrong.  The environment is laid back and low key with some live music on the weekends.  They have been visited by the Food Network to taste some of their famous dishes and this place deserves it! 

Hungry Tarpon (Islamorada)

The Hungry Tarpon has been a Keys’ favorite for visitors and locals alike for a couple decades now.  Offering the freshest seafood, including delicious fried conch and great views.

Grouper (Top Picks)

Big Water Fish Market (Siesta Key)

Big Water is set up market style with a twist and is both a restaurant and fish market. They only sell and prepare the freshest locally caught seafood. The restaurant is laid back with a real Florida feel.  You can also get great take out to grill at home. 

Peg Leg Pete’s (Pensacola Beach)

Peg Leg Pete’s is an iconic restaurant on Pensacola Beach. Locals have been coming here for three decades.  It offers fresh seafood and musical entertainment while you dine. Even if you are just visiting you will be treated like family.  Pete’s offers not just a night out to dinner, but also an experience to remember! 

Dry Dock Waterfront Grill (Longboat Key)

Dry Dock has excellent seafood that you can enjoy right by the docks. The views could not be better with pelicans hanging around. How cool! The grouper bites are super fresh and will be some of the best you have ever had easily.

Schooners (Panama City Beach)

Schooners is located right on the beach and offer only the freshest seafood along with live music. It’s a true Florida experience! 


Hi, I'm Jen and I love to travel, go to the beach and write about all the places I have visited. I also have a bucket list of places I can't wait to try! I've visited Cape Cod every summer since I was a kid and now enjoy traveling to all great beach destinations, including Florida! I have worked in the travel industry for all of my career. I love sharing my experiences of different restaurants and places and helping travelers find the best fit for them!

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